"Therefore, in order to keep me from becoming conceited, I was given a thorn in my flesh, a messenger of Satan, to torment me. Three times I pleaded with the Lord to take it away from me. But he said to me, "My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness." Therefore, I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ's power may rest on me. That is why, for Christ's sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong." II Corinthians 12:7-10
A few weeks ago, I had an allergic reaction to some medicine which left me violently ill. You know the feeling, you can't even imagine getting to the car in order to get to the doctor. At the end of the day, when the worst was over, I began to reflect on my day. I wish I could tell you that I praised God that His grace was sufficient as I endured the agony. Unfortunately, I hadn't talked to God all day. I thought about all the people that I pray for each week. Why didn't I cry out to God for my healing, help, relief, or comfort?
As I reflected on my life, God brought to mind this passage from II Corinthians which we had been studying that week. "Therefore, in order to keep me from becoming conceited, I was given a thorn in my flesh..." The Holy Spirit then applied it to my life with the word, "independent." The reason I did not pray is that I was relying on MY thoughts, MY plans, and MY resolve to get through the day. As much as I live to follow and serve God, I needed to be reminded of the danger of self-reliance.
God allows difficulties, illnesses, and trials in our lives because the Christian life is not about us (Galatians 2:20) and can't be successfully navigated without Him. It is a yielded life, a surrendered life, a dependent life. God intends for His power to be displayed in our weakness (II Corinthians 12:9) and God is glorified when it happens (II Corinthias 4:7). Allow God to demonstrate His power through your life today.
Father, help me to be a vessel through which Your power flows as I face insults, hardships, and difficulties. I confess that at times, I rely on myself more than I rely on You. Let Your power be made perfect in my weakness today. Help me to find my strength in You and bring You glory by my dependence on You.
Posted on Mon, July 11, 2011
by Cathy Hurtado